Posts in Case Study
New-York Historical Society

Project: New-York Historical Society (N-YHS)
Duration: October 2014 to Present

Objective: Building a repository to manage all digital objects for the entire institution, facilitating search across the library and museum as well as moving to an open source software product and community.

Strategy: discoverygarden and N-YHS worked closely to assess the goals and requirements of the repository. The process provided a roadmap to implementing the repository, including a development approach, training, and cost planning for the project. The project was executed in phases to decrease complexity and show success to stakeholders early and often. For example, the project included a migration, custom development, and theme display phases.

Result: The project resulted in the migration of more than 100,000 digital objects from the library, which removed discovery barriers. Migration of new collections will continue in the future, providing access to significant research collections through a single interface. The New-York Historical Society Museum and Library Digital Collections launched to the public in December 2016. To explore the repository and its materials, visit the website:


Adventist Digital Library

Project: Adventist Digital Library (ADL)

Duration: June 2015 to Present

Objective: Creating a public digital library to preserve and expose collections of materials including books, periodicals, photographs and audio media from the early 19th century to the present.

Strategy: discoverygarden and Adventist Digital Library staff worked closely to refine requirements related to infrastructure and deployment, metadata management, discovery, and building an attractive theme. The process paved the way for installation, customization, training and eventually support and maintenance services. The collaboration provided a swift start to the project and the skills and confidence for Adventist Digital Library staff to be able to ingest content on their own.

Result: The Adventist Digital Library project provided access to two million digital objects by its BETA launch in February 2016; eight months after starting the project. The repository now hosts collections from multiple institutions affiliated with the Adventist Church. The project continues to grow as a large backlog of digitized content is described and ingested into the repository. To explore the repository and its materials, visit the website:

Case Study, ClientsTJ Lewis
California Historical Society

Project: California Historical Society (CHS)
Duration:September 2015 to Present
Objective:Implement a pilot repository project with the goal of implementing a robust, long-term digital preservation strategy that would:

  • Move data off of legacy systems & storage and into the cloud to lessen IT burden,

  • Collocate all digital assets in one system while avoiding vendor and/ or data lock-in,

  • Provide solutions for preservation and access requirements,

  • Make content more discoverable through harvest to DPLA and other aggregators, and

  • Have a predictable costing model for long-term sustainability.

Strategy: The one-year pilot project involved close collaboration with CHS project staff, discoverygarden staff, as well as staff at Truman Technologies and Komodo Cloud (hosting providers). CHS purchased the Islandora Jumpstart Bundle and the Bronze Level support services from discoverygarden. The services allowed the project to meet major milestones, such as:  

  • Migrating one high priority collection into Islandora,

  • Theming the site to match the organizational brand,

  • Configuring on-site and external discovery setting (Islandora Solr and Islandora OAI), and

  • Focusing on training to build confidence among the project team.

Result: The California Historical Society Digital Library Islandora pilot preserves and exposes Anton Wagner’s Los Angeles, 1932-33, a collection of photographs of urban, suburban, rural and waterfront areas of Los Angeles County.  


University of Missouri - Kansas City

Project: University of Missouri - Kansas City (UMKC)

Duration: January 2014 - Present

Objective: Move to an open source digital repository framework, implemented across three campuses. 

Strategy: In January 2014, the University of Missouri - Kansas City (UMKC) received access to an Islandora repository, installed by discoverygarden. It was part of a shared service project spanning three campuses of the University of Missouri. To kick-off the project, UMKC decided to focus on  theming and metadata display. discoverygarden was a strategic partner in the process, offering design and Drupal development skills to improve the overall look of the site and discoverability of content.  

Result: discoverygarden designed, built and implemented a custom theme for the repository that focuses on discovery. It included Solr views that leveraged the granular metadata profile used by UMKC. The project also resulted in improvements to the Solr Metadata Display Module, that have since been contributed back to the Islandora Community. The module allows a repository administrator to customize the record display per content model.

Since then, UMKC staff have migrated almost 10,000 objects from their most used collections - focused primarily on Kansas City history, politics and jazz.  

UMKC Special Digital Collections, officially launched on January 19, 2016.

Tulane University Digital Library

Project: Tulane University Digital Library

Duration: February 2015 to Present

Objective: Howard-Tilton Memorial Library at Tulane University wanted to move to an open source repository platform. The process included installing Islandora, undertaking an assessment of data stored in CONTENTdm, migrating data and creating an attractive and intuitive theme focused on discovery.

Strategy: Utilizing discoverygarden service bundles (Jumpstart Bundle, Assessment and Professional Services) for all tasks needed to launch the repository within a 7 month period.

Implementation: Tulane University started with a Jumpstart Bundle that included an Islandora installation, training, support services, and access to our Knowledge Base documentation. The next step involved assessing forty-one (41) collections for migration, including the scripting process to move the data and transform it to MODS and DC. The final step was to undertake the migration and to build a theme that facilitates discovery.

The Tulane University Digital Library houses holdings that support the teaching, research and public service goals of the University. It provides online communities of scholars, students and the public access to the rare and unique collections in areas such as Latin American studies, jazz, New Orleans and Louisiana history and architecture, as well as the electronic theses and dissertations and the Tulane University Archives.

Washington Research Library Consortium

WRLC Consortial Repository

July 2014 - present

Migrate DSpace content to Islandora multi-site repository and develop shared tools to meet the needs of all consortial members, and develop separate themes to distinguish the look and feel of the five member sites.

The project championed enhancements to Islandora including:

  • individual datastream embargoes

  • navigational breadcrumbs

  • display of usage stats on object pages

  • searching and sorting within individual collections

In addition to these functional enhancements, WRLC staff have been working on a number of fronts to add necessary services to the Islandora environment. They include:

  • Replacement of the DSpace handle server to allow existing handles from the Research Commons to continue to function

  • Implementation of the OAI-PMH functionality, allowing metadata from Islandora to be harvested by external discovery platforms (such as Summon) and providing additional access points to Islandora content

  • Authentication via EZproxy was another important service established in May. This was done with the assistance of Mark Jordan, Head of Library Systems at Simon Fraser University's W.A.C. Bennett Library. Being part of the Islandora community has its advantages!

Lossless importation of data, functional enhancement, five coordinated but distinguishable sites.